Chhath Puja: People take dip in Yamuna in the midst of toxic foam .

On the first day of the Chhath Puja celebrations, several people were seen taking a dip in the Yamuna river near Kalindi Kunj in Delhi as a part of the ritual on Monday (November 8, 2021) amid toxic foam. 

During the four-day festival, numerous devotees were forced to complete the rituals of day one in the river water which currently has increased ammonia levels. This has also hit the city’s water supply as the water in the Yamuna river is way too contaminated for consumption.

DJB vice-chairman Raghav Chadha earlier said water production by the treatment plants was hit due to heavy sewage and industrial discharge from Haryana.

“Heavy sewage and industrial waste were discharged by Haryana during Diwali in the Yamuna. Increased ammonia levels forced a reduction in water treatment plants (WTPs) operating capacity by 50 percent. Delhi Jal Board’s marvelous work has led to the WTPs operating at full capacity now,” he said.

The Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) has prohibited Chhath Puja on the banks of the Yamuna this year, leading to a war of words between the BJP and AAP. The DDMA has, however, allowed Chhath celebrations at “designated sites” excluding Yamuna banks in Delhi.

Earlier this year, the Delhi government sketched out a nine-point action plan to minimise frothing in the Yamuna due to the discharge of untreated sewage into the river.

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